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The quiet street is lined with low-rise houses and neatly tiled pavements. But there is one building that stands out in this otherwise ordinary Tokyo suburb: a grey concrete cube with a rainbow splash of colours on its façade. Niiza, a suburban commuter haven around an hour by train from central Tokyo in Saitama prefecture, may seem an unlikely setting for experimental design but this is where Sugamo Shinkin Bank, a Tokyo- and Saitama-based chain founded in 1922, has opened its latest, most innovative branch.

Until now the bank has not been reno…

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